15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

The picturesque coastline of the Pacific Northwest is host to 15 swoon-worthy Washington coastal towns that are a well-kept secret, boasting a treasure trove of charming towns that offer a delightful blend of natural beauty, rich cultural experiences, and unforgettable adventures.

Whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly getaway or a lavish indulgence, these 15 Washington coastal towns have something special for every type of traveler seeking an escape from the ordinary.

  1. Port Townsend
  2. La Conner
  3. Ocean Shores
  4. Westport
  5. Seabrook
  6. Port Angeles
  7. Langley
  8. Friday Harbor
  9. Long Beach
  10. And more …

15 Washington Coastal Towns For Your Bucket List

Whether you’re searching for relaxation, outdoor exploration, or a dose of cultural immersion, these coastal gems have something to offer everyone.

Join us as we journey through these captivating towns, each with unique appeal and charm.

1. Port Townsend

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Nestled at the northeastern tip of Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, 58 miles from Seattle, Port Townsend exudes an air of timeless elegance, offering visitors a perfect blend of history, culture, and coastal charm, where time seems to slow down.

Known for its well-preserved Victorian architecture, the relaxed pace of this charming seaport town offers a unique escape for travelers seeking a leisurely and budget-friendly escape with a glimpse into the past while enjoying the serene beauty of the sea.

Activities

Explore the historic Fort Worden, which served as a military base during the late 19th century. Today, it’s a sprawling state park offering hiking trails, sandy beaches, and even accommodations in former officer quarters.

The Port Townsend Marine Science Center provides an interactive learning experience for maritime enthusiasts, showcasing the region’s rich marine life. Enjoy a day trip of whale watching or rent a kayak and get close to nature.

Best Restaurants

Indulge your taste buds at Waterfront Pizza, a local favorite offering delicious Mediterranean-inspired dishes with a view of the water. Sirens Pub is another gem known for its hearty pub fare and vibrant ambiance.

Where to Stay

The Bishop Victorian Hotel

Manresa Castle

2. La Conner

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Nestled along the Swinomish Channel, La Conner is a charming budget-friendly coastal town that exudes artistic flair and offers a serene escape 66 miles from Seattle for those seeking a tranquil retreat amid stunning landscapes.

With its vibrant arts scene, historic sites, and breathtaking seasonal tulip fields, La Conner promises a relaxed, unique blend of cultural exploration and natural beauty.

Activities

Art enthusiasts will be delighted by the numerous galleries showcasing local talent, offering everything from paintings and sculptures to handcrafted jewelry.

For a touch of history, the Skagit County Historical Museum provides insight into the town’s past.

If you’re visiting in spring, be sure to wander through the vibrant tulip fields that surround the area, creating a picturesque and colorful backdrop.

Best Restaurants

Nell Thorn Restaurant & Pub is a must-visit, known for its Pacific Northwest cuisine served in a cozy and welcoming atmosphere. La Conner Brewing Co. is another favorite, offering various locally-made craft beers and comfort food with a modern twist.

Where To Stay

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit
La Conner Channel Lodge

The Heron Inn

La Conner Channel Lodge

3. Ocean Shores

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Ocean Shores offers a classic beachside retreat situated along the rugged Washington coastline. The ideal destination for budget-conscious travelers and those looking to indulge in a more luxurious coastal escape, where relaxation and outdoor adventures intertwine with miles of shoreline and seaside charm 132 miles from Seattle.

Ocean Shores is a destination for relaxation and outdoor exploration. Whether you’re looking to unwind on the beach, indulge in seaside activities, or immerse yourself in the area’s natural beauty, this town offers a tranquil and rejuvenating escape.

Activities

The pristine beach is a central attraction, inviting visitors to take leisurely walks, build sandcastles, or simply unwind while listening to the soothing waves.

Damon Point State Park is a must-visit for the adventurous, offering hiking trails and stunning ocean views.

Additionally, horseback riding along the beach and exploring the Coastal Interpretive Center provide a deeper connection to the coastal ecosystem.

Best Restaurants

Galway Bay Irish Restaurant offers a delightful taste of Ireland with a menu featuring hearty Irish-inspired dishes. Bennett’s Fish Shack is a local favorite, known for its fresh seafood and casual waterfront dining experience.

Where to Stay

The Polynesian Resort

Canterbury Inn

4. Westport

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Nestled along the Washington coast, 132 miles from Seattle center, Westport beckons with its vibrant coastal energy, making it a paradise for surfers, seafood enthusiasts, and those seeking maritime charm.

With its energetic coastal vibe and range of activities, this destination offers an exciting escape that caters to thrill-seekers and relaxation enthusiasts.

Whether you’re eager to ride the waves, savor fresh seafood, or immerse yourself in maritime history, this seaside haven is the perfect destination for budget-conscious travelers and those looking to elevate their coastal getaway.

Activities

For surf enthusiasts, Westport is a haven with consistent waves perfect for riding. If you’re new to surfing, local instructors offer lessons to help you catch your first wave. Climb the 136 steps of Grays Harbour Lighthouse for a panoramic view of Westpoint in Washington’s tallest lighthouse.

Delve into maritime history at the Westport Maritime Museum, where you learn about the town’s fishing heritage; for a more active adventure, set sail on a fishing charter to experience the thrill of reeling in your own catch.

Best Restaurants

Blackbeard’s Brewing Co. offers craft beer and wood-fired pizza in a lively setting, making it a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Aloha Alabama Restaurant is another gem, serving up southern home-style BBQ ribs for something different.

Where to Stay

Westport Marina Cottages

Loge at The Sands

5. Seabrook

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Seabrook welcomes visitors only 138 miles from Seattle with its New Urbanism design. It creates a picturesque coastal village that exudes a sense of community and relaxation.

With its thoughtfully planned layout, serene beaches, and charming boutiques, Seabrook promises a rejuvenating escape making it the ideal destination for relaxation and family-friendly getaways catering to budget-conscious travelers and those seeking a more spacious and luxurious retreat.

Activities

Unwind on the pristine dog-friendly beaches, where the sound of crashing waves provides the perfect backdrop for relaxation.

Take leisurely strolls and discover unique boutiques that offer everything from handcrafted goods to coastal-inspired décor through the town’s well-designed layout. Perhaps a casual walk through the Saturday markets.

Best Restaurants

Rising Tide Tavern offers Pacific Northwest-inspired cuisine in a cozy setting where you can savor locally sourced dishes. Frontager’s Pizza Co. is a favorite among visitors, serving wood-fired pizza that captures the essence of Seabrook’s coastal charm.

Where to Stay

Catch a Wave

Seaglass Cottage

6. Port Angeles

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Port Angeles is a captivating town on the northern edge of the Olympic Peninsula 138 miles from Seattle that offers a gateway to rugged landscapes and urban exploration.

With its proximity to Olympic National Park, vibrant downtown scene, and rich maritime history, Port Angeles promises a diverse and exciting adventure destination for outdoor and urban explorers.

It’s the ideal trip for budget-conscious travelers and those looking to treat themselves to a more luxurious getaway.

Activities

Embark on an exploration of Olympic National Park, where you can hike through lush forests, stand in awe of thundering waterfalls, and be captivated by the serene beauty of Lake Crescent.

Discover the town’s maritime heritage at the Port Angeles Maritime Museum, which houses exhibits and artifacts that tell the story of the region’s seafaring past.

Take a leisurely stroll through Port Angeles’ charming downtown area, lined with boutiques, galleries, and eateries.

Best Restaurants

Next Door Gastropub offers a delightful fusion of flavors, where you can indulge in a diverse range of dishes in a laid-back atmosphere. Kokopelli Grill is a culinary gem known for its mouthwatering hand crafter southwest cuisine that showcases the finest ingredients.

Where to Stay

Red Lion

Olympic Lodge

7. Langley

Nestled on Whidbey Island’s picturesque shores, Langley’s charming seaside town, 138 miles from Seattle, is ideal for a romantic getaway and artistic exploration.

With its galleries, quaint boutiques, and stunning waterfront views, Langley promises a romantic escape and an enriching artistic experience that captivates you for those romantic getaways.

The perfect coastal haven that offers a picture-perfect balance of luxury and artistic immersion

 for those seeking a more opulent and enchanting getaway.

Activities

Immerse yourself in the town’s vibrant arts scene by exploring local galleries, where you can discover a diverse array of paintings, sculptures, and handcrafted treasures.

Stroll along the charming streets, or embark on a romantic whale-watching adventure to witness the majestic marine life of the Salish Sea.

Visit Whidbey Island Distillery to discover why they are rated the world’s highest-rated spirits.

Best Restaurants

Prima Bistro is a culinary gem, offering an intimate setting and delectable fine dining dishes. The Braeburn Restaurant captures the essence of comfort food with a twist.

Where to Stay

The Inn at Langley

Saratoga Inn

8. Friday Harbor

Nestled within the scenic San Juan Islands, Friday Harbor is a picturesque coastal town 103 miles north of Seattle that invites you to embrace island life and immerse yourself in natural beauty.

The perfect escape for nature enthusiasts with its whale-watching opportunities and maritime allure, Friday Harbor promises a captivating blend of relaxation and wildlife adventure.

Once you reach the island, it’s a budget-friendly destination that offers a luxurious and enchanting escape.

Activities

Embark on an unforgettable whale-watching expedition, where you can witness majestic orcas and other marine creatures thriving in their natural habitat.

Explore 500 years of history in the San Juan Island National Historical Park. It’s home to historic sites and hiking trails offering stunning vistas of the surrounding landscapes.

Wander through the delightful streets, and find treasures on Spring Street while browsing local boutiques.

Best Restaurants

Duck Soup Inn, a chic rustic cabin located in Puget Sound inland, offers seasonal ingredients showcasing the bounty of Northwest islands bounty. Vinny’s Ristorante has an intimate atmosphere featuring fresh seafood, delicious pasta like Mama makes, and steak dishes.

Where to Stay

Friday Harbor House

Tucker House Inn

9. Long Beach

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Long Beach is a charming seaside town, a mere 36 miles from Seattle, that promises an idyllic blend of beachside relaxation and family-friendly activities. Long Beach offers a perfect getaway for leisure seekers and adventure enthusiasts with its expansive shoreline, vibrant boardwalk, and captivating coastal scenery.

Whether building sandcastles with your children, embarking on outdoor adventures or simply unwinding by the sea, Long Beach offers a budget-conscious getaway for those looking for a more comfortable stay.

Activities

Explore the beauty of Cape Disappointment State Park, home to rugged cliffs, historic lighthouses, and hiking trails that offer panoramic vistas.

Experience the joy of kite flying on the beach, or venture into the town’s bustling markets and galleries.

Best Restaurants

Lost Roo captures the essence of a casual pub with a beachy vibe, offering a menu filled with flavorful pub fare and drinks that perfectly complement the coastal ambiance.

The Depot Restaurant offers a fine dining experience, serving delectable coastal cuisine in a charming historic setting.

Where to Stay

Adrift Hotel and Spa

Chautauqua Lodge

10. Bellingham

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Nestled between the serene waters of Bellingham Bay and the lush landscapes of the Pacific Northwest, Bellingham is a captivating city some 89 miles from Seattle that seamlessly blends outdoor adventure with urban charm.

With its diverse activities, vibrant cultural scene, and stunning natural beauty, Bellingham promises an enriching and dynamic escape for outdoor enthusiasts, art lovers, and those seeking an urban experience.

Whether you’re eager to hike in the mountains, explore local art galleries, or savor the city’s culinary delights, Bellingham caters to budget-conscious travelers and provides a more upscale experience.

Activities

Explore Whatcom Falls Park, where trails wind through towering trees, leading to picturesque waterfalls and serene ponds.

Immerse yourself in the eclectic arts scene by visiting local galleries and attending live performances at the Mount Baker Theatre.

The Chuckanut Mountains offer hiking trails with panoramic views for outdoor enthusiasts, and nearby Larrabee State Park invites you to enjoy coastal exploration and beachcombing.

Best Restaurants

Boundary Bay Brewery is a local favorite, offering craft beers and delicious pub fare in a lively setting that captures the essence of Bellingham’s community spirit.

Aslan Brewing Company offers a sustainable and organic approach to brewing, serving tasty bites alongside their diverse range of beers.

Where to Stay

The Chrysalis Inn & Spa

GuestHouse Inn & Suites Bellingham

11. Aberdeen

Nestled along the picturesque Chehalis River 109 miles from Seattle, Aberdeen offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. The ideal destination for history enthusiasts and those seeking a serene riverside escape.

With its musical legacy, intriguing museums, and scenic riverside setting, Aberdeen promises a harmonious blend of exploration and relaxation for the budget conscious.

Activities

Pay homage to music legend Kurt Cobain, born in Aberdeen, at Kurt Cobain Memorial Park, where you can reflect on his impact while enjoying the serene surroundings.

Explore Bottle Beach Park, where walking trails lead you along the shores that bring in hordes of migratory birds, a delight for bird watchers.

Hop onto the Lady Washington for a step back in time with her sails and crew and take a cruise on the seas with educational activities and maritime history.

Best Restaurants

Rediviva Restaurant captures the essence of Pacific Northwest cuisine, offering a range of delicious dishes that highlight locally sourced ingredients in a contemporary environment.

Billy’s Bar and Grill is a haunted favorite, serving up mouthwatering burgers and sandwiches, and you may catch a glimpse of Billy’s ghost while enjoying your meal.

Where to Stay

Grays Harbor Inn & Suites Aberdeen

A Harbor View Inn

12. Sequim

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Sequim, the lavender capital of the north, is a charming town nestled in the heart of the Olympic Peninsula, well known for its fields of lavender flowers. Only 122 miles from Seattle, it’s a scenic two-hour drive.

With its stunning landscapes, vibrant arts scene, and enchanting lavender fields, Sequim promises to be a unique rejuvenating destination for nature lovers looking for a relaxing getaway while keeping within a healthy budget.

Activities

Explore the sprawling lavender farms that grace the area, offering a sensory delight with their vibrant colors and sweet scents.

Visit the Olympic Game Farm, where you can get up close and personal with various animals, including bison, elk, and a friendly Kodiak bear.

Hike the picturesque trails of Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge, home to diverse bird species and stunning coastal views.

Best Restaurants

Alder Wood Bistro offers a farm-to-table dining experience, serving locally sourced ingredients crafted into delectable dishes. Sequim Sunshine Cafe is a local favorite, known for its hearty breakfasts and welcoming atmosphere.

Where to Stay

Lost Mountain Lodge

Bond Ranch Retreat

13. Port Orchard

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Port Orchard offers a delightful coastal escape along the shores of Sinclair Inlet, a short 22 miles away from Seattle via the ferry route. The town is infused with nautical allure and small-town charm.

Port Orchard is an ideal destination for those seeking a mix of relaxation, maritime exploration, and scenic beauty that makes it an affordable, quick getaway from the bustle of city life.

Activities

Immerse yourself in maritime history at the Puget Sound Navy Museum, where you can explore exhibits highlighting the region’s naval legacy.

Stroll along the picturesque Waterfront Marina Park, offering stunning water views and a perfect spot for picnics.

Enjoy views from a rented kayak and take in the scenic coast of Port Orchard, with panoramic views of the inlet and the town from the perspective of the water.

Best Restaurants

Holy Water Heavenly Lounge is a local favorite, offering a selection of wines and cocktails for the perfect afternoon wind down; they also serve some delicious snacks and items to accompany your drinks. Bay Street Bistro provides an intimate dining experience with a delectable range of dishes, from fresh seafood to artisanal desserts.

Where to Stay

The Comfort Inn on the Bay

Vintage Inn

14. Ilwaco

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Nestled at the confluence of the Pacific Ocean and the Columbia River, Ilwaco is a hidden coastal gem 170 miles from Seattle that beckons with its maritime allure and natural beauty.

With its historic waterfront, outdoor pursuits, and inviting ambiance, Ilwaco promises a captivating escape that caters to maritime enthusiasts, nature lovers, and those seeking a coastal escape for a harmonious blend of relaxation, exploration, and enriching getaway.

You can find budget-friendly accommodation or splurge a bit on fancier hotels that offer all the amenities and comforts you deserve to spoil yourself with.

Activities

Experience the thrill of reeling in salmon and other local catches, embark on a fishing charter, and spend the day at sea, catching dinner.

Visit the Columbia River, enjoy capturing the photographic landscape, and immortalize your memories of Ilwaco’s natural beauty. You can also take a trip to the Columbia Historical State Park for an educational day.

Best Restaurant

The Salt Hotel & Pub offers a charming setting with delightful coastal cuisine, providing a perfect spot to savor local flavors while enjoying waterfront views.

OleBob’s Seafoods Market & Galley is a seafood lover’s paradise, serving fresh catches in a casual and inviting atmosphere.

Where to Stay

At The Helm

Inn at Harbor Village

15. Hoquiam

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Nestled along the tranquil banks of the Hoquiam River. This charming city is 113 miles from Seattle and offers a serene escape combining riverside beauty and coastal allure.

With its historic architecture, scenic landscapes, and various activities, Hoquiam is an ideal destination for those seeking a tranquil retreat, history enthusiasts, or nature lovers.

Hoquiam aligns with a more modest budget.

Activities

15 Swoon-Worthy Washington Coastal Towns You Need To Visit

Visit the Polson Museum. The residence for Arnold Polson was constructed in 1924 as the heir to the Polson Logging Co. The Museum now occupies one of Hoquiam’s most splendid and well-preserved riverfront mansions.

Take a hike along Bowerman’s Basin; if you visit between April and May, you can enjoy the splendor of the migratory birds.

Stroll through the quaint downtown area to discover boutiques, art galleries, and local craftsmanship.

Best Restaurants

The Jitter House is a cozy café that offers a variety of coffee drinks and comfort food, making it a perfect spot for a leisurely breakfast or brunch. 8th Street Ale House provides a relaxed atmosphere, diverse craft beers, and delicious pub fare.

Where to Stay

Econo Lodge Inn & Suites

River Access Hoquiam Cottage

Conclusion

These 15 swoon-worthy Washington coastal towns offer unique blends of activities. Each city offers a special atmosphere that caters to nature lovers, outdoor activities, or a relaxing getaway from city life. Discover their local dining-out options and relax in these towns’ quaint accommodations for a budget-friendly or romantic getaway. Washington has a coastal city ready for you.

Resources

https://www.parks.wa.gov/511/Fort-Worden

https://cityofpt.us/administration/page/welcome-city-port-townsend#:~:text=Port%20Townsend%20is%20approximately%209.46,the%20late%2019th%20century.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Port_Townsend,_Washington

https://www.townoflaconner.org/155/Town-History#:~:text=La%20Conner%20is%20wintering%20grounds,first%20courthouse%20north%20of%20Seattle.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ocean_Shores,_Washington

https://www.experiencewestport.com/Experiences

https://www.cityofpa.us/

https://www.bellingham.org/

https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Aberdeen_(Washington)#:~:text=Aberdeen%20is%20called%20the%20%22Gateway,Kurt%20Cobain%20and%20Krist%20Novoselic.

https://www.visitsunnysequim.com/

https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Port_Orchard

https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Ilwaco

About the author

My name is April, and I’m a Seattle-based writer, traveler, and foodie. I started this travel guide blog to share my passion for Seattle with fellow travelers and locals alike.

Whether you’re looking for the best coffee shops, the trendiest restaurants, or the most scenic hiking trails, I’ve got you covered.

When I’m not writing or exploring Seattle, you can find me watching movies with my husband, reading, or gardening with my dog in the backyard.

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